chocolate mousse with salted caramel pecans

i am currently dreaming of a slice of heaven, a perfect place where no worries and nothing bad happens. where you wake up to the smell of waffles with maple syrup, where cake is served for lunch meetings, people always smile and sing and dance. if you think i’m a lunatic, well, it’s probably just that i feel super tired. tiredness is like a blanket that wraps itself around me. and it doesn’t really stop. so i’m dreaming. and i won’t stop. 

chocolate mousse with salted caramel pecans
recipe by douce steiner

ingredients for the mousse:

6 yolks
75 g confectioner’s sugar
200 g dark chocolate (i used maracaibo grand cry)
a little grand marnier (or kirsch or rum or armagnac)
1/2 l heavy cream, whipped
double crème, salted caramel nuts (recipe below) and grand marnier orange sauce for garnish
in a bain marie, beat the yolks and confectioner’s sugar until warm, remove from bain marie and, in ice water now, continue to mix with a handmixer until foamy. in the meantime, melt chocolate (either very slowly on low heat or in a bain marie, as well. put aside the chocolate when melted to cool slightly. and only now add the alcohol (if using any) to the chocolate. add the warm, liquid chocolate to the yolks with a spatula. then fold in the whipped cream. fill the mousse into a bowl or into teacups and put in the fridge to cool for at least 2 hours. 
ingredients for the salted caramel pecans:
1 cup pecans
4 tbsp. brown sugar
3 tbsp. water
2 tbsp. butter
1 large pinch fleur de sel
directions for the nuts: 
put the brown sugar, water, butter and salt in a skillet. bring to a boil, and boil for one minute before adding the nuts. stir and toss until the nuts are coated and the liquid has evaporated or sort of incorporated into the nuts (yeah, whatevs, i know… just continue to cook). transfer the nuts onto a parchment paper and separate with a fork. let cool and dry. store in an airtight container for a couple of days (or more, i guess).
to assemble:
before serving, put a handful of nuts into a ziplock bag, place on a solid ground and crush with a rolling pin. prepare a bowl with hot water and a large tablespoon. put the spoon in the hot water, then, with the hot spoon, make a sliding movement over the top of the chocolate mousse. the same way you would shape a ball of ice cream. create the perfect swirl! yeah. place the chocolate mousse swirl on a plate (note: if using the grand marnier orange sauce from this recipe, make a sauce-mirror on the plate first, and place the chocolate mousse swirl on top of the sauce). sprinkle with the salted caramelized pecan crumbs. add a dollop of double crème. and mayber a flower for a pop of color. serve, as always, with love. 
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